THE Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal has upheld the refusal of an application to demolish part of Sorrento’s historic Dalwhinnie house.
The property’s owners had sought to partially demolish and extend buildings on the Esplanade property which has a heritage overlay.
The applicants took the matter to VCAT in December after Mornington Peninsula Shire Council failed to grant a permit for partial demolition, alterations and additions to the two existing dwellings on the land within the required time frame.
The proposed alterations included a new basement car park, decking and a pool and new upper floor.
The property includes a Federation weatherboard house built in 1913 by George Seth Coppin’s Sorrento Tramway Company, to provide accommodation for the manager of the steam tramway which ran past the house.
The building retains some original features, such as projecting gables, weatherboard walls, roughcast decoration and ornate bargeboards and finials, and some of the casement windows are thought to be original.
The tribunal noted that its original location along the route of the tramway from the foreshore to the back beach is considered to add to its historical significance.
The tribunal found the demolition of the south-east corner of the house would have “major adverse impacts on the heritage significance of this place”.
Its order to refuse the permit was handed down on 23 April.
The mayor Cr Steve Holland said the proposed additions to the house “did not represent an acceptable design response nor did they respect the heritage setting or context of Dalwhinnie”.
“Our heritage places capture the history that helped shape our community and it’s vital we protect them,” he said.